By Andrea Sims, Independent Consultant, Rodan + Fields Dermatologist and CWCC Member
Entrepreneurs often live with the hope that if they build it, customers will come. But in today’s economy, it takes a lot more than hope to get people to purchase your products or services: New business-building practices are a must if you want to expand.
One necessary element is a clear-cut plan for growth. But many entrepreneurs get obsessed with creating the perfect plan. Or they never get around to putting one together. Crafting a plan is necessary, quick and effective. Create a road map that will infuse new energy, enthusiasm and vision into your company’s growth plans.
- Start by writing down your Goals. Eat That Frog By Brian Tracy discusses the importance of writing down daily, weekly, monthly and yearly goals. There was a fascinating study conducted on the 1979 Harvard MBA program where graduate students were asked “have you set clear, written goals for your future and made plans to accomplish them?” The result, only 3% had written goals and plans, 13% had goals but they weren’t in writing and 84% had no goals at all. Ten years later, the same group was interviewed again and the result was absolutely mind-blowing.The 13% of the class who had goals, but did not write them down was earning twice the amount of the 84% who had no goals. The 3% who had written goals were earning, on average, ten times as much as the other 97% of the class combined! While this study only looks at earnings to quantify success, I still find it to be an extremely motivating example of why creating clear and measurable goals and writing them down is a key to success.
- For many of us, networking, and creating and building new relationships is the key to creating new leads and revenue. Identify which networking organizations are providing you the right connections. Attending too many groups may leave you scattered, feeling disorganized and leave little time for following up with the connections you have made. Avoid being a professional card collector. Imagine that every card you have given or collected is worth $100 dollars and follow-up with your new connections. They may or may not need the services you provide, but they may have just the right connection you are looking for. Never prejudge and “Go For No”. Should you receive a no, DON’T TAKE IT PERSONALLY! That “yes” may be that next contact.
- Be A Go Giver! I recommend reading the book “Go Givers Sell More” by Bob Burg. Have you ever met an individual who was so interested in what you were doing and looking for ways to provide you assistance in making connections or building your business that when you walked away from the conversation, you really weren’t sure what it was that they too were representing? Being a Go Giver is about creating relationships, building trust and looking for ways to support others in business. Individuals conduct business with people they like and trust. During conversations ask questions. Be ready to listen and be prepared to share little about your personal business. Ask if they wouldn’t mind connecting on social media, most often Linked In. After the interaction, follow-up with the individual and provide any potential connections you are able to make for them and share more about your business at that time. When a referral for your business comes up, you will be the first person to come to mind due to the relationship that you have fostered.
As an independent business owner, I understand the delicate balance between making new connections, fostering new relationships, generating new leads and following up. Remember that a sale is never made during your first interaction with someone. It all starts with a goal and a plan. I heard this along the way, that if you find that you have run out of individuals to connect with or potential new business, get out of your office or house because veryone there knows what you do. Here’s to a prosperous and successful 2015!
About Andrea Sims
Andrea Sims is a Premier Level V Executive Consultant with Rodan + Fields Dermatologist focusing on Changing Skin and Changing Lives. Andrea is from WI and has been living in Colorado for 20 years. Prior to starting her own business in partnership with the doctors who created Proactiv Solutions she had a successful 12 year career as a corporate trainer. For the last 4 years she has worked with entrepreneurs in the U.S. to coach, mentor and train them to start their own business and create virtual franchises within a $99 billion global industry. In addition, she provides a dermatological product line treating numerous skin care conditions focusing on anti-aging, sun damage, acne, and sensitive skin conditions like rosacea, and eczema. Their new product “Fills a Wrinkle While You Sleep, No Needles Required!”